Harp History in Latin America

The Jalisco harp (arpa jalisciense) is the type of harp traditionally found in Jalisco, Mexico. It has long held two roles: That of being played solo, and that of being part of a mariachi. It is also used in the neighboring state of Michoacán, where, of course, it is called "arpa michoacana" (Michoacán harp). It is but one of many distinct types of harps found in various parts of Mexico, (Jalisco, Michoacán, Veracruz , Zacatecas, Sonora, San Luís Potosí, and Chiapas, to name a few), and throughout Latin America (Paraguay, Ecuador, Perú, Venezuela, Colombia, Guatemala). To learn more, click here.

William Faulkner

William has played harp since 1979. Director of the Mariachi Mixtlán from 1980 through 1998, and solo harpist since 1983, William and his harp have traveled throughout California and the Southwestern United States as well as various parts of Mexico. He studied with Arturo Mendoza, former harpist with the Mariachi Vargas de Tecalitlán, and has given workshops at festivals in Mexico City, Guadalajara, California, Arizona and New Mexico. William and his harp have traveled as far as Scotland to the Edinburgh Festival (with Mariachi International América from Tucson Arizona), to Tahiti and the Marquesas Islands. To learn more, click here.


Downloadable MP3 files of selected pieces performed on Jalisco harp by William Faulkner.


A gallery of photographs of William Faulkner at various events, including some high resolution photographs suitable for downloading for publicity proposes.


Photographs and short biographies of various harpists, mainly from Jalisco or playing with mariachis. Some interesting characters here.


Have a question about the Jalisco harp? You might find the answer here. How is it tuned? Where to find one? Where to purchase strings? etc...


Interested in learning to play Jalisco style harp? Click here for printed music and downloadable quicktime lessons.


William is available for concerts and private events, as well as give workshops or individual lessons. These are the various methods of how to reach him.


Learn more about this traditional mariachi instrument. Includes history, tunings and chord charts.


Links to related sites of interest. Players, makers, history

©2005 William Faulkner - Jalisco Harpist. All Rights Reserved